Friday, March 2, 2007

questions about spinning

Hi everyone,

I know that there are some of you that spin and I have some questions for you. I am considering buying a Ashford Joy spinning wheel, now keep in mind I don't know how to spin yet but am going to find some classes in my area. I want a wheel that is able to pack away from my three children who just can't seem to keep their hands off of things. So is this what would be a good choice??? Also, where do all of you buy your fibers from??? and what fibers are good to spin with for a beginner???? I hope that you can offer me some advice. Thanks


Elysbeth said...

Run Pam, Run, do not enter the slippery slope to spinning. Shut down the computer and step away. : )

Did you look at the folding wheel list page on Spindlers? And I liked the review found about why the Sonata. As for fiber suggestions, I'll leave that to the pros.

Amelia, belle of The Bellwether said...

The Joy's a nice wheel; try out as many as you can, though. Find a fiber show or spin-in. I love my Journey Wheel, unique among fold-ups in that its folded state is a wooden box. Great bedside table (I kid you not). The Lendrum is a really nice wheel, I'm tall so if my choice was a Joy or a Lendrum, I'd go with the Lendrum.

Blue-Faced Leicester is a good beginner fiber and usually available almost anywhere in roving, undyed or space dyed. Corriedale and New Zealand Wool are also good. I just taught a class using Romney and Coopworth, those are nice; all of these are medium wools, which is typically the easiest to start with.

In my neck of the woods, I'd send folks to Woodland Woolworks ( for low priced undyed commercial roving; but you might look for someone close to you, especially if you can get there in person.

Melissa said...

Well, I've bought plenty of fiber from Leah, originator of this blog... right Leah? As soon as I get some fibers listed there, I will also suggest you take a look at my etsy shop. Start with medium-grade roving or clean flicked locks from a breed like Romney. As for wheels and children: I have seven children, youngest is almost two. They haven't been able to do any permanent damage to my Schacht Matchless (yet), although I was a bit worried when my oldest recently knocked it over and stepped on it (teen boy awkwardness I supposed). Castle-style wheels don't take up much space and look great tucked in a corner when you're not using it, so pick the wheel by how it spins and feels for you, not by it's ability to fold up and fit in your back pocket.

Leah said...

I wish I could offer you some advice on wheel choice, but what Amelia said is wonderful advice. I only spin on Ashfords or a Kromski at this point in time...I do love an Ashford wheel and a friend of mine has the Joy and loves it. You could tuck it under a bed or otherwise out of sight of the kiddos :)

I recommend a good, decent staple length medium grade wool for starting out, such as Romney, Coopworth, or Corriedale. I think Jacob is incredibly easy to spin as well, but generally a little coarser but PERECT for hats and mittens and outwear because it's light and lofty and warm. I've actually started folks out on wool/mohair blends and they did pretty well...the mohair is a little longer staple length so sometimes makes it easier if you find you're losing your fiber into the orifice :)

Good luck with the hunt!